Ocular Delivery Group

The Ocular Delivery Group (Group Leader prof. Katrien Remaut; associate professor; pharmacist) became highly experienced developing (and using) in vitro, ex vivo and in vivo models for the evaluation of non-viral nucleic acid delivery to the retina. This team recently developed an ex vivo retinal explant from bovine eyes which keeps the vitreous and inner limiting membrane (ILM) intact during dissection. This allows to evaluate the potential of intravitreally injected nanoparticles to deliver therapeutics to the retina. Prof. Remaut has published her observations international scientific journals such as Nano Today, ASC Nano, Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews, Journal of Controlled Release, Bioconjugate Chemistry, Molecular Pharmaceutics, Acta Biomaterialia, ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, etc. The team currently works on the development of Nanomedicines for, especially, ocular application, with a focus on fundamental aspects of extracellular and intracellular delivery barriers. This team co-operates with Department of Pharmaceutics of Utrecht University, the Institute de la vision in Paris, Max Planck Institute in Stuttgart, the Institute of Neurosciences in Montpellier, the Department of Ophthalmology from the University of Auckland and the Gene Therapy Unit of Radboud University Medical Center.


(A) Schematic overview of the journey nanoparticles (NPs) need to overcome to travel from the vitreous (following intravitreal (IVT) injection, to the retina. The inner limiting membrane (ILM) is a harsh barrier to overcome. (B) Size scale of intravitreal injected therapeutics that are currently under investigation. The ILM cut off is unknown, but estimated between 40 and 100 nm. (C) Overview of different in vivo (mouse, Xenopus), ex vivo (bovine and human explants) and in vitro (retinal organoids, cell culture) models that are successfully employed in the Ocular Delivery Group